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We have no members in Zanu PF: Zapu

Opposition party, Zapu has refuted claims it is planning to recall some of its former members who are in Zanu PF and currently serving in Parliament.

This comes after reports claimed Zapu was in the process of writing to Parliament to recall Cain Mathema and Sithembiso Nyoni.  

In an interview with CITE after Zapu’s presidium met Wednesday at its party offices, the party’s secretary-general who also doubles as presidency spokesperson, Dr Strike Mkandla said they had no party members in parliament.

“We want to address the issue of recalls that associate us with Zanu and reports that Zapu was going to recall its members who are in Zanu-PF. There are statements purported to have come from the Zapu leadership but the Zapu leadership represented here through its presidency wants to assure you that it did not originate such. Maybe someone thought Zapu should do the recalls but as the party leadership, we never came out with such a statement,” he said.

Dr Mkandla said such claims were misleading as they had no representation in parliament.

“First of all before you can recall your members from parliament, for one reason or the other, you don’t want them to be there but they must be your members and we don’t have members of ZAPU in Parliament,” he said.

“We have members of Zanu-PF who are former Zapu members. There are many former Zapu members, some of them are even founder members of several parties including the MDC and so on. So Zapu members of the olden days are in a lot of parties and we don’t have currently any member of Zapu in parliament.”

The secretary-general indicated calls for Zapu to recall their members from Parliament is actually misplaced.

“To recall means we would have fielded in the parliamentary elections as Zapu candidates and that didn’t happen. (Unless) if Zapu had tried and failed then members had been appointed into Parliament it could have been something else but nobody who is currently in Parliament went into elections as a Zapu member,” Dr Mkandla stressed.

Dr Mkandla highlighted that Zapu was independent from the ruling party Zanu PF after pulling out in 2008.

“Zapu was formalised properly in the 2010 congress where a statement was made that we are completely divorced from Zanu-PF and we are now re-established as Zapu,” he said.

“There are people who may be quite keen that we withdraw members from Zanu for several reasons first of all because sometimes people say Zapu has members in Zanu yet we don’t have any members. Those that are there, are in Zanu of their own volition, as individuals they don’t represent Zapu in any way. There’s no Zapu in Zanu that is the bottom line.”

The secretary general explained that their case was different from the recalls that were taking place in the MDC.

“You see people in the MDC Alliance who were recalled were there as MDC-T, they fielded as MDC-T because they had no control of the party name. The party name was with Thokozani Khupe, so she could then withdraw them because she was using her name. Similarly, those with PDP would recall other MPs. See that PDP (leader Lucia) Matibenga is trying to also pull out those people who went into parliament using the name PDP while they were members of the MDC Alliance,” Dr Mkandla said.

He noted that MDC Alliance was facing challenges as they had fielded candidates representing the parties they came from although they were under the alliance banner.

“So individual members of the MDC Alliance fielded people in their own right while they were in the alliance. They didn’t field them as alliance candidates, they fielded them as individual parties but within the framework of the alliance, that’s why they have problems,” said Dr Mkandla.

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